Preston Kelly Rides Off Into the Sunset

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The Minneapolis advertising agency’s new campaign for Physicians Mutual revolves around the real people who toil in the American West.

"For Physicians Mutual, the grassroots, salt-of-the-earth brand positioning led seamlessly to the programming our media team discovered during the formation of the new show’s concept,” said Chris Preston, Executive Creative Director at Preston Kelly.

Aiming to change the impression that insurance is overly complicated, Omaha-based Physicians Mutual has launched a campaign that taps into “Main Street” values, with the help of advertising partner Preston Kelly. Charged with the mission of refreshing the insurance provider’s brand—and putting a recognizable face on its services—the agency created a series of television commercials, web videos and billboards that feature hard-working, “regular folk” along with a dash of straight-talk humor.

Iconic ideas are at the heart of Preston Kelly’s creative efforts—and the Physicians Mutual campaign is no exception. In addition to the commercials, the agency orchestrated an exclusive presenting sponsorship of Animal Planet’s “Last American Cowboy,” which begins airing on June 7.

“The collaboration between our media and creative teams—along with the client—is ingrained in our agency culture,” said Chris Preston, Executive Creative Director at Preston Kelly. “But for Physicians Mutual, the grassroots, salt-of-the-earth brand positioning led seamlessly to the programming our media team discovered during the formation of the new show’s concept.”

In American culture, the cowboy serves as the ultimate iconic symbol. But the struggles endured by the three Montana ranching families chronicled in “Last American Cowboy” strips the cinematic romance from the “cowboy way” and reveals instead the tenacity and work ethic required by such a life. While the families have different ranching philosophies, they each rely on a blend of personal fortitude and reliance on loved ones to breathe life into the spirit of the American West.

"At Physicians Mutual, we believe our honest, straight-forward approach with customers helps to differentiate us,” said Bob Gunia, Senior Vice President of the Public Affairs Group at Physicians Mutual. “Preston Kelly helped us package the Physicians Mutual story and convey it in a way that cuts through the clutter and connects with more people."

Those same values are at the core of the campaign Preston Kelly created in collaboration with Physicians Mutual. The root of the campaign’s strategy stems from a tried-and-true commitment to tie the insurance provider’s values to messaging that directly appeals to consumers who often feel underrepresented—which makes personal connection an especially powerful point of differentiation.

In addition to the television spots—which begin airing May 10—and the sponsorship of “Last American Cowboy,” the integrated Physicians Mutual campaign will also feature a sweepstakes drive that offers a trip for two to Dunton Hot Springs resort in the Colorado Rockies. On the digital front, Preston Kelly has also zeroed in on a variety of tactics designed to ramp up Physicians Mutual’s association with “Last American Cowboy,” and reinforce the values of hard work and straight talk.

About Preston Kelly
Preston Kelly is a full-service, independent agency that creates Iconic Ideas for its clients, including financial services, insurance, restaurant, consumer packaged goods, outdoor recreation, retail and gaming. In 2009 Preston Kelly was an O’Toole finalist, selected for the Communication Arts advertising annual and Webpick of the week, and received a Gold Effie—the top marketing award based on communications that lead to outstanding results. Preston Kelly is a member of Worldwide Partners, the world’s largest network of independent marketing and communications firms. To learn more about Preston Kelly, visit, become a fan on Facebook at or join the conversation on Twitter at

About Physicians Mutual
Physicians Mutual Insurance Company and Physicians Life Insurance Company are members of the Physicians Mutual family. The companies provide a full portfolio of individual health and life insurance products, as well as retirement products.

The companies have total assets exceeding $2.8 billion and consistently maintain some of the highest financial strength ratings in the nation from independent insurance analysts, including A.M. Best Company and Ratings.

Founded in 1902, Physicians Mutual Insurance Company is headquartered in Omaha, Neb. To learn more about Physicians Mutual, please visit


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